I spent over thirty years litigating claims and it simply wore me out – physically and mentally. It was my job over that time to fight and try to win for my clients. In the course of that time in an adversarial system I witnessed first hand how an adversarial system negatively impacts all involved in the process: clients, lawyers, judges and juries. The system is particularly hard on the clients and witnesses – it is no fun to have nosy lawyers or insurance companies picking through your life, often times the most personal of details, and only then after enduring that ordeal to have to bare your soul to a judge or jury. Money is spent prosecuting and defending the case over a lengthy time with the result ultimately being one that makes no one happy because of the costs and most importantly because the end result is out of the parties’ control. In most litigated and tried cases, no one wins.
Whether it is mediation or arbitration or some combination or variant thereof, alternative dispute resolution works. In my opinion and experience the success of ADR is well established – anecdotally and otherwise. It saves money and time and wear and tear on all involved. And ADR leads to results that the parties can live with.
ADR can happen quickly and is relatively inexpensive. Most mediations that I do cost about $2000 in mediation fees which is typically split between the parties. With mediation, the end result is one the parties design and control. It is not a decision made by anyone other than the parties. While arbitration involves a decision made by an arbitrator, the end result is designed to occur quicker and with less expense and hassle than a full-blown trial.
I want to see you avoid what I described in the first paragraph above. I want to see you save money and time and wear and tear and craft a result that you can live with. This is why I believe in what I am trying to do by establishing a full-time practice as a mediator or arbitrator.